Living the contradictions Part 2


It is extremely difficult to explain just how frustrating it can be to deal with constant contradictions with said reality (which appears psychotic and delusional due to the lack of coherence in regards to the logic behind decision making and current economic arguments coming from govts and industry) and that of lived reality. The two are at odds with one another and cannot be reconciled. The two are in opposition. There are no ifs, ands, or buts about it. The information that we are repeatedly given, the endless repetition of flawed logic continues to run rampant and is again reiterated by a majority of people. The disconnect here is simply mind boggling. And no matter how much sense my intellect makes of connecting all the reasons for our current circumstances, my heart weighs heavy with the knowledge that it is unlikely that the change that is needed will indeed occur. This produces a conundrum for me on an individual level and it continually baffles me that my concerns, desires, and needs are diminished so often by others in such a way that I am often prone to despair and a deep sorrow that I can not alleviate.

Should I stay or should I go, the ultimate existential question we are faced with, one I do not easily share as I know the typical responses to my pondering of this question. Buy why? How is it that on an individual level to even contemplate taking ones life into ones hand produces such disgust, disdain, and a plethora of other sensations and feelings? How is it that when viewed on an individual level, it is seen as pathological rather than understandable? This too is at odds with our common reality. As a species we are on a path that is genocidal, homicidal, and completely suicidal. And yet we do not see this???? How is this even possible?

When so many people are denied dignity, are stripped of their personal integrity just so they may make a few bucks in order to survive, but to never truly live. How can anyone demand and expect people to suffer needlessly just in order to keep those of us living in relative comfort from having to change? It is inconceivable to me that the hidden expectations and demands of society disproportionately place so much blame and responsibility on those who have the least amount of power and control while abdicating the responsibility of those with power and resources. What is clear is that there is a total lack of understanding of issues surrounding the causes of poverty and the many barriers that exist to keep people locked in poverty. There is no desire to understand, no willingness. Yes there are people who care, but not enough. As governments step back, the onus falls to NGO’s to take care of everyone. But they are part of the system. They only work as bandaids and can never truly transform society. So much of our efforts are wasted simply due to our operating within the confines of this hyper version of capitalism that has arisen since the 70’s with deregulation of the finance sector and much of the protections that were in place for workers and the environment.

So the main issue really comes down to economics, capital, or currency. Doesn’t matter to me what term people prefer. For the sake of the rest of this piece I will use the word currency or capital, it is less offensive. There are many different forms of capital/currency. We have natural capital which includes all of our natural resources land, water, minerals, oil, gas, the sun and all that these imply. There is also social capital and emotional capital. Unfortunately we do not accurately assess these forms of capital and they are not included in assessments prior to development. I almost forgot intellectual capital, or that of creativity/imagination, and skills. People all over the world are realizing these various forms of capital and are developing systems that take all these various forms of capital and highlight as well as make use of these forms!!!!

Our current paradigm is on a collision course! The more the powers that be resist change the more they accelerate our decline and demise. They may have fancy complex tools and equations (economic, mathematical) but the fact is they are unnecessary. They have been duped by their own need for creating complexity where none is needed. Grade 1 math will suffice and it is increasingly clear that all the mainstream economic gurus and industry leaders as well as govt leaders have forgotten the basic skills of grade 1 math. Thats right folks, don’t listen to the know nothings on the television. Their way is inadequate (by design), missing the most important information required to make wise decisions. In other words it is bankrupt and will lead to bankruptcy complete and total bankruptcy!! Yup, environmentally, socially, creatively, and monetarily. Our poverty is not just that of finances, it is emotional, it is social, it is of the imagination, our environment. Money dominates our lives, it has infiltrated every aspect of our lives, and yet is insufficient. It has perverted our very being and has shrunk our world. It has warped our views and how we view ourselves in the world. There is no human nature that is inherent in us. We are products of our environment. If we create a hostile environment then it is ridiculous to expect people to rize above and be more. If we have a rich and loving society/environment, then people behave as such.

To hear lame statements such as ‘get a job’ or if you change your thoughts and only think good things, good things will return to you. What a load of shite!!! The whole positivistic ideology finds fault with individuals while ignoring societal responsibilities, governmental responsibilities, industry responsibilities. Now don’t get me wrong, I’m all for individual responsibility, but c’mon get real!!!! Individuals don’t live in completely isolated worlds of their own making. It is a hugely condescending way of thinking that is rather convenient for those who say such things. It ignores context, it ignores our common history and individual histories within the larger history. Our society creates dependancy and interdependancy. And when individuals lack in physical/material resources/currency, monetary currency, lack skills, health as a currency (forgot health-yikes!!!), and social currency, then how the FUCK is someone supposed to pull themselves up by the bootstraps???? There is a fancy expensive restaurant right next door to where I live, one that I can’t afford. Ever since this restaurant opened there is more class based violence that I am witness to. I hear the most hurtful things by monied people. I have heard monied people laugh at us poor folk, our poverty appears to be an endless source of amusement. But I ask you, how many people could actually afford their lifestyles without credit, financing, mortgages, and loans???

And lets look at the statement ‘get a job’ okay, well, hmmm, I’m on disability and I work and I still struggle month to month. Most people have to commute to get to work. If I didn’t have a bus pass(yearly) I wouldn’t be able to work. If I didn’t have a iphone and computer, I wouldn’t be able to work. These two items cost more than I can afford each month and a cheaper cel phone wouldn’t work for the kind of work that I do, so it necessitates a more expensive phone and hence plan. This is a very coercive thing, it is not out of choice. If I could function without these things, believe me I would!! It would save me $120-140.00 per month. But without these things I would be even more socially isolated than I currently am, simply because these are the preferred technologies that people communicate with and socialize with. So there are tonnes of people that DON’T have a computer. So how are people supposed to find work when everything is online? Yes, libraries have computers but there are time limits and many poor people would not be able to afford to print out resumes and also pay for the bus to go out and look. Even if people are able to find work, it often doesn’t make sense to take the job. It costs money to work. There is a strange tendency for people to eat more when they work (imagine that, eh?) and then there is the cost of transit. With so many jobs not offering full time hours, or consistent hours then the cost/benefit ratio actually works to people’s detriment not benefit!!! What if you need new clothes for the job, or better teeth? This statement of ‘get a job’ is obscene and nonsensical. The cost of living continually rises and wages simply do not cover the basic necessities (rent, self-care/hygiene products, food, clothing) let alone provide the ability to afford healthcare, dental, transit, or entertainment. No dentist, no entertainment (going to movies or anything else), no eating out, no haircuts (that aren’t free at the carnegie), yeah even going for coffee with a friend is a luxury that is ill afforded. Meaning to have coffee means not getting as much food. Any extra unexpected expenditures come out of food budgets!!!

One of the biggest determinants of health and well being comes in the form of social support networks. So even if a person receives assistance with food, shelter, and other life sustaining essentials such as healthcare, there is still the matter of any given individual’s social capital. If this element continues to be impoverished, then it is unrealistic to think an individual can sustain themselves in the long term. But this requires change. Mass change. A change in worldview, a change towards ethics. An ethics of caring and compassion. An economy of care, empathy. It is our biggest asset and makes life worth living. I cannot see my own survival let alone global survival without it. When you look at what governments are spending money on and what they ignore, it is clear where we are going. Governments are spending big money on weaponization, militarization, expanding the prison system, and subsidizing industries hell bent on destruction and waste, and increasing scarcity. To grow the homeless population is costly, not investing in prevention is costly, relying on NGO’s is costly, creating joblessness and job precarity is costly. To what end? You can’t eat money and you can’t take it with you when you die. We all die. So, I reiterate, for what purpose do we continue to do what we know fails. To what end?

When you fund weaponization and militarization (not for individual consumption) it means you have to create war to justify the expense. Look at whats happening with immigration law at a time when we are literally shrinking the landscape by our refusal to adapt and change to our changing environments!!! We are creating environmental refugees at an alarming rate and we make it increasingly difficult for people to be mobile in search of employment but create this very situation. Governments and industry always allow for segments of ‘illegals’ to work for next to nothing, but deny them legal entry. WOW! We then spread fear here in our country and abroad about the threat to jobs. Again…WOW!!!! Absolutely insane. Oh how easy it is to brain wash entire populations of people. THank fucking goodness, I’ve escaped somewhat unscathed, well, not really. My entire existence has been fraught with negative experiences with others simply because I have a different worldview. It is why I have to seek comfort in books, the occasional documentary, and with various minority groups who understand at least some of what concerns me(us all) and who also deal with adversity daily. So how can I continue my life amidst all of you others if you refuse to change but demand it of me, whether explicit or implicit? I tell you now,


My body dictates everything these days, I didn’t give it much choice, and now it leaves me none. My body suffers the insults and it cannot withstand all the lack we have created. My poverty is not just a money thing. Money holds very little meaning for me above and beyond needing it to purchase my bodily survival. Yes, I could use more of it but its not like I want lots of it. I’d like to be able to take a few dance classes, music lessons, art classes, or have access to a space in which I can do all these things on my own (with the supplies of course which I cannot afford). I want to see if I can create some of these spaces (a project I hope to implement). For me my survival depends on the ability to freely express myself. To dream once again, but for this to occur I need help, I cannot push forward alone. I lack social capital. This has a direct effect on me physically, psychically. There is only so much that I can do on my own and living all the contradictions is exhausting, it is a battle to be She every day. I didn’t ask for this battle, it became a necessary one. I am becoming and it takes a shit load of work and energy to push pass the denial that is inherent in the system that actively works to block me and each and every one of us (who isn’t wealthy) at every turn. Aren’t you tired of working for some strangers benefit rather than your own?

Do NOT say, yeah but its inevitable, there is no alternative, there is no excuse, rationalization, or justification for this kind of response. It is utterly ridonkulous, and nonsensical. There is no alternative…to resistance/action!! If we were truly individuals we would not be so easy to manipulate, control, and change in terms of our thinking(or lack of it) and behaviour. In William Sargant’s book Battle for the Mind, he explains just how easy it it to work over the mind and prepare a fertile open vessel that will replicate and repeat the necessary slogans and beliefs that work to the benefit of the 1%. Think of Pavlov and his classical conditioning experiments and you get your answer. The majority of the population in N. America has learned quite well the trained behaviour of learned helplessness. We are told we are special and unique and then treated and trained like dogs!!!!!

Sigh, ah to record what people say and play it back for them. Perhaps then there would be movement, if people could hear the sounds of their words and what those words imply, perhaps it would help create cognitive dissonance. It would be wise for people to understand some fairly basic psychological principles, because it is the most heavily utilized discipline known to man and it is used against us rather than to help us grow.


Navigating the Terrain–living the contradictions

How often does each of us hear things like you’re special, you’re unique! The underlying message in this individualistic ideology, and yes, it is an ideology, whether implicit or explicit is that each and every person is unique and special…you don’t even have to do anything, its something we all acquire from birth and are told repeatedly, although I am not referring to parental messages here but rather societal ones. What does this even mean??? To be an individual? Is it something that we buy? Thats sure what it looks like. I recently saw a show called the social where they had experts telling parents how to brand their children online. Wow! Recently Coke came out with cans that have people’s names on them. OMFG and WTF!!! I can almost guarantee my name is not included, so what does that mean for people?

Why am I discussing this you may ask, well, I will tell you. A friend convinced me that it would be good to blog, as a way for me to practice using my voice without interruption and all the other discomfitting things that can happen when interacting with people. It stems from the fact that actually being an individual is extremely difficult and fraught with unpleasant realities. We do not honour or practice individuality in the slightest. Reality shows a completely different picture than the one that is talked of.

Now I feel as if I have to preface most of the things that I say with detailed explanations as I am so often misunderstood. I often include personal experiences to illustrate and provide examples of what I am trying to get across. I do this to personalize and humanize the issue, NOT because I think I’m special or better than anyone, far from it!!! I usually talk about social issues that yes, they have affected me, but I am actually trying to point out that the problems are massive and I am only one of many. The main reason that I think that soooo many people are misunderstood is from the inability to listen/hear. And I mean really listen. To be fully present when in the presence of another human being. To give them the space, freedom, to say what they have to say, without cutting them off, without imposing our own interpretations of their experience, and giving advice that wasn’t asked for.

I do not know how many people know of Maslow’s hierarchy of needs but we could actually model society based on this hierarchy of needs which does truly unite each and every one of us. It includes of course the basic necessities for survival, water, food, shelter, clothing, then it moves up to belonging and acceptance, social relations-love, and I may be leaving something out but at the top of the hierarchy is self-actualization. The theory goes that if the lower level needs are not met, then self-actualization cannot occur. I totally agree with this and think that we fail as a society in meeting most of these needs.

Listening is such an undervalued ability/skill. The more we are enmeshed in a monetary worldview the more this ability appears to disappear from our emotional landscape. It is the source of much of my existential angst, frustration. How is it that one can Be in the world and NOT Be in the world? Well, much of my existence is experienced just like that! I matter…I don’t matter. I appear to disappear (and by this I’m talking about the experience of walking on the streets where people hog the sidewalks and don’t make space for others, getting bumped, pushed, or forced to go on the road). I remember a time when we actually made room for each other, we would adjust ourselves momentarily so that people could still walk on the sidewalk and then resume our lines. This doesn’t happen very often anymore. If it happens often enough it can lead to feelings of invisibility, or like being garbage that is swept to the side, unworthy to walk/share the same sidewalk.

So I’m unique, special-just not special enough to deserve a dream. My biggest dream of becoming a musician died in adolescence. Now adolescence was rough, I was not a happy girl, but I had music! Music was EVERYTHING to me. I was on the path to becoming a musician in the symphony. As long as I kept up with it, I was assured of that scholarship, I had talent. Music was what gave my life meaning. I also loved dance but wasn’t in classes or anything, I just did it privately, choreographing and creating-allowing the music to fill me and then speak through me in movement. I was also not to bad with art, but only allowed the one elective, so music was my first choice, my true love. It connected me to others(albeit I would never meet these others) in a way that couldn’t be achieved in the real. I have always been rather confounded by people, for the most part. I am often more alone with people than when on my own. My ‘difference’ ends up being revealed and it is rather hit and miss whether I am accepted or not. Mostly not. But back to music. The band program got cancelled in grade 11. And I got lost, existential crisis #1. WTF was I to do now? I tried acting in grade 12 and it helped me heal a little and I acquired new skills. It was a blast and in this too I had talent. Two awards had to be given that year as there were students that had been taking drama since grade 8 and I had never taken the prereqs. I had gotten special permission to take the class as I had acted in a play directed by a friend for course credit and the teacher was impressed. In some ways I think this saved me. It gave me the opportunity to express some of my pent up emotions…I needed release of some kind.

But you know, I tried burying the pain, confusion, and disillusionment for years. It NEVER works. Repression, does not work. It always materializes, it may take awhile, but at some point, it will come up, again and again if necessary. The unconscious is always striving to be known. And wouldn’t you know it, when someone offered me drugs, I took em!!! I was lost and didn’t even know how to dream anymore. I thought it was cruel to tell people to dream, to tell people, you’re special, you’re unique, you can do anything you want to do when you grow up. And all the other things we are routinely told again and again. I think one of the worst things we do is raise false hope. Honestly, that experience crushed me. I was simply never the same again. If I couldn’t be in the symphony I didn’t want to do anything else. So I meandered for awhile, got addicted to a drug for a couple of years. It wasn’t until I spoke to a woman at WAVAW that I stopped beating myself up for becoming an addict. It was survival. So believe it or not, drugs saved my life. Heroin saved my life because I was pretty hell bent on ridding myself of the unpleasant thing. I had lost the will to live. I didn’t really care about anything. Sure I went through the motions, it just wasn’t enough. And you know what, it still isn’t. There is far too much pressure placed on individuals who are struggling with addiction. And frankly, if the only thing that changes in a person’s life is being clean, well, theres not much point then is there. Quality of life is what matters, not quantity. And perhaps if professionals actually heard their clients, listened to their histories, their dreams, and needs (existential as well as survival) then we’d do a better job of helping people. This is largely not done. More harm is done than anything else. There are good therapists out there, but they are costly as well as rare.

After a few years I decided after some stupid government assessment, that I would go back to school, become a counsellor. Got a certificate, but it wasn’t good enough, I needed to do a shitload of personal work before working with others. I could see the potential danger and harm that some of the students would inevitably do simply due to their belief systems and lack of awareness of what that could do (religious men thinking they can counsel women on reproductive issues????WTF?) So I talked with the instructors as to the best course of action. So I went to college and then university. Now my masters and PsyD I never got to do. That too was yanked from under me and threw me down the path of HOLYFUCKSHITIMINTROUBLE!!! All told, 100 grand in the whole and the job market dried up and blown away. Over qualified for many jobs but the pay was deplorable and not enough to live let alone pay off my debt. It wouldn’t have mattered even if I had the higher degrees, agencies simply are no longer hiring fully credentialed therapists when they can get lesser credentialed employees for lesser wages.

In the end I guess in some ways its alright that this plan didn’t get finished, as I really had to work hard to convince myself it was a good idea. It was more a practicality than anything. It certainly wasn’t out of desire. My only interests have been music, singing, dancing, art, and acting. All things related to creation. And these days access to these typically means having money. The only other thing I am truly interested in is self-realization through learning and gardening. I educate myself as institutions diminish in terms of what they can offer.

So I found myself in an impossible situation, becoming homeless in the bargain and having to ask for help from someone I did not want to ask for help. I knew what the consequences would be and yet, what other option did I really have besides moving to Kamloops to live with my mum. I knew that due to my health, it would be best for me to stay in Vancouver, so I did the unthinkable and asked if I could stay for 6 mos. with my father. I have a step mother and 2 half brothers. I love my brothers but we were not raised together. I am an outsider. My experience in this house with this particular family dynamic was anethema to me. So here I am with a university education being encouraged to work at mcdonalds or walmart and other such nonsense. The same family encouraged me to take a paper route when I was 30, which I did simply to shut them up. Some battles are simply not worth fighting.

So remember I mentioned the lack of listening. Well, it was repeatedly demonstrated in this environment. If I said I wasn’t willing to work in such places I was a snob, thinking I was better than everyone. Hmmmm, so not heard. People really seem to be oblivious to the amount of harm they can do through not listening, through imposing their thoughts, their beliefs on others. I watched a documentary last night that demonstrated it nicely. Sergio-he worked for the UN, an amazing person. Well, a bomb that blew up the UN left Sergio trapped in the rubble. There were 2 men in the military/paramedics who were helping Sergio and another man Gil. They had to remove the rubble with their hands and then with a purse and a string. One of the paramedics was religious the other was more open minded. The situation didn’t look good in terms of getting both men out as debris had trapped their legs and such. The religious paramedic said he would pray for Sergio and for Sergio to have faith in God and such and such. Sergio would have none of it, he wanted to know what was going on in the rest of the building, asking how everyone else was. Telling the men to take care of others first. Well, wouldn’t you know it, the religious paramedic got upset. He blamed Sergio for dying, for not having faith in God, who sent two angels to save him. He actually said that Sergio had failed him. The other helper didn’t see things this way. He thought that Sergio was being selfless, that even in his last moments, his thoughts were for others and not himself. I was glad that someone else could see this, and that he respected Sergio’s wants and needs. I didn’t do it justice really, but Sergio had a real sense that each person has a need for dignity, integrity, to be HEARD. So the one man trying to help wasn’t listening. And his words regarding his opinion of Sergio, his description of this man who he did not know are condescending, and utterly disrespectful.

This is an area where I do have consistency in terms of experiences. But they are not pleasant. How it is experienced may differ slightly but overall it renders me invisible, unimportant, and unnecessary. I am not simply referring to myself here. In my random meetings with various people, I hear the untold crushing of dreams, unsatisfied, unfulfilled people desperate for someone, anyone…even a stranger, to listen, really, truly listen to the histories of lives not lived. People talk to me, with me, at me. The desperation is palpable. There is no space for me to share, their need is often to great, their voices spilling out without heed or awareness of the other as a needy person also. It is raw and powerful and exhausting. Needs are not met, physical and psychical. This rather constant denial of my need to self-actualize, my need for a life with dignity (a human need for all), to live a life that is worthwhile and meaningful. Where I am able to experience joy, wonder, and amazement as well as sorrow, despair, and incredulity.

The fact that I have repeatedly sought out professional help, not so much cuz I can’t do for myself, but to fulfill a need. To be heard. Funny that I have to pay for that. Believe it or not, you can have conversations with people where you end up feeling bad rather than good. Where for whatever reason it just didn’t feel right, something was missing. What was said confirms that you were not heard. I read this lovely book, The Unsayable: the hidden language of trauma by Annie G. Rogers, PH.D. So simple, so eloquent. I don’t have a phd so its not likely that I will be taken seriously which is why I often include material from books. I don’t believe in expertise anymore, or rather I am highly selective of what I qualify as expertise. I have been repeatedly asked why I am not a therapist, who says I’m not? No, I don’t do it in an office. I live it, when I can. When it is needed in everyday life. As to why I dont’ do it in an office, well perhaps the following will help to explain.

“In Lacanian work the therapist does not interpret the content of what is being said in the way most therapists do. Rather, she or he listens and responds to the patient’s speech in the following ways: by underlining signifiers-and by intervening in such a way that the patient can make connections among signifiers, as well as between signifiers and symptoms.”

Lacan really focused on language and how it affects us. “At first words are babbling streams of sound. And though very young children play with words and sounds in turn-taking rhythms with others, they don’t use language with the purpose of communicating. But as a child begins to see that words can make things happen, can call forth specific responses from others, she is able to make what Lacan calls a “demand.” This is a request for recognition of what she means and for a response that affirms she is loved. Lacan distinguishes between physiological needs of our earliest infancy, which, of course, must be met for the child to survive, and the ideas of a demand. Provided with food and warmth, yet without recognition or any evidence of love, a child will become lethargic, stop growing, and even die. The capacity to make a demand for something, and make herself understood, is crucial to a child’s sense of being loved. But making a demand requires a risk; the other person may not understand, or may understand and say no.”Annie G. Rogers, p.198. this book is brilliant. There are two more pieces I want to include because I think it is that important. Listening matters. Not just to what is being said, but to what is not being said as well as the choice in words we use.

Now this lady gets it!!! I’ve been struggling with this for 5 yrs, well longer than that, but my focus has changed and now I am able to get to the heart of the matter. The utter lack of heart present in so many of our lives. So, to lend credibility to my experiences, I shall include Annie’s conclusions as they are also mine:

“If we don’t understand how we are predators to one another through language–how our speaking sounds and resounds through the unconscious and determines our actions–we will certainly destroy one another and our fragile little planet.
“The real unsayable of trauma is the trauma of language itself. Our use of language makes us human, and in our humanity we create the worlds we’re bent on destroying. If you do not believe words create destruction and trauma, listen to the language of war, how we use the name of God, justice, goodness, peace, and reparation, all to justify endless violence. Think of the harm we do one another all the time, how we use words to cover it up, as if we are not responsible. At this time in human history I think its crucial to speak into the terrible puzzle of human torment and destruction that we perpetrate on one another with words, with the very way we name things–because our words precede and justify our actions.” “People speak to me and I think, “He has no idea what he’s actually saying,” or “She doesn’t know that she’s addressing me.” Wow, I know exactly how that feels. I experience it all the time. In fact I have been wanting for years to record what people say and then play it back for them so that they can hear what it is they said. What it sounds like. So that people can get a better idea of how their words affect people. Annie Rogers too believes that professionals that are supposedly there to help people do far more harm and entrench trauma than actually providing help that leads to meaningful change.

The idea that we are individuals is such a joke I can bearly contain myself. That is precisely what I have always struggled with. The very title of my blog is a description of what my experience of being an individual has been met with. I am being myself. This is me. Guess what I can actually think and love using my mind. I will not apologize for this. If I am denied this, there is no point in my existence. I have been scrambling since I lost that scholarship. Trying to create meaning from a society that values one thing. Money. It has infiltrated all aspects of life, all aspects of thought, it even shapes the concept of ‘individuality’ into something that can be purchased but whatever you do, don’t fall out of line!!! Doing so leads to severe punishment and isolation. I have been called a rebel. I do not understand this. Yes, I have had to fight to be me. But I did not make it so. I would not have to fight or ‘rebel’ if we lived in a world that actually valued individuality, that offered dignity and integrity to all, if being a woman didn’t often mean censoring myself or being censored by so many men (not that women don’t do it too). I have been called an anomaly, what the fuck does that mean in an individual society? Our society is riddled with contradictions between what we are told and lived experience/reality.

So I mostly connect with writers I’ll never meet or converse with, or films/documentaries filled with people who care about the same things I do…again whom I will never meet, and then there are those I see in a professional setting, my therapist who doesn’t act like a therapist (meaning the power differential doesn’t suffocate me), and my naturopath. There is one friend, my best friend and I love her to bits. But I realize that both of us are operating within limits. We can not provide each other with all our needs. This is not a criticism, nor do I think it healthy to adopt thinking in such ways, that any one person can be everything for another. Nuh, uh. One of the biggest barriers for us is simply money. We are both extremely poor which limits what we can do. We all have many aspects that need nurturing, many get censored or repressed often this leads to illness as I can attest to.

It’s not an accident that I’m sick, its not some freak thing that happened. It started in childhood and has been building ever since. Unfortunately one thing did happen and it too could have been prevented if I’d only been heard. I repeatedly told the doctors that it was stress related , I was ignored, I had no authority over my body, they did. They imposed their system and belief on me I begrudgingly took their medication but cut a deal. I told the specialist that I didn’t believe the meds would work since 15 yrs of treatments hadn’t worked so far, didn’t think it would be different this time. The specialist agreed that if it didn’t work they would back off and let me determine what happens in future. Well, I went toxic. So instead of treating the original issue, I now had a separate issue…renal failure. I tried explaining things but to no avail. They had to pull me off the meds immediately but the damage was done and because the issue of stress was not addressed I continued to decline. So, I hired a naturopath. Thank you Grandma, this wouldn’t be possible without you!!!! Only time will tell whether a transplant or dialysis is inevitable, but through the simple act of listening…and I mean really listening, in less than 3 months time I am actually feeling improvements!!! It has now been 20yrs I have been seeing specialists with no improvements, only decline.

See the difference? Others do, the ladies in the office have made comments in terms of how I was a year ago (regarding my state of mind) and now I’m seeing physical improvements. I’ve actually gone 2 whole weeks without vomiting. First time in 5 yrs!!!!!!!

Sigh, so much more to write but gotta’ get of this dang machine.


The Age of Dust and Decay

The Oft Ostracized Educated Opinion of a Real Woman, or OOEO

Oh humanity where have you gone. I miss you. Yearning and burning I reach out only to be pushed away. Always on the outside looking to get in. How did it come to pass? This life?…has turned to mere existence, endless toil for what I do not know. It escapes me. Dream after dream shattered beyond all reckoning and as I collect each piece I am cut on the ragged edges of what my life has become. A shattered mirror.

Piece by jagged piece

I am met with reflections of what was

what is

and what is yet to be

These reflections haunt me, drawing me back and forwards in time afraid to stand still for the quicksand I know is waiting

If I don’t keep moving, I’ll get sucked in, pulling me ever downward in the depths of an empty solipsism that has plagued so many-annihilation of Being


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The Age of Dust and Decay

Oh humanity where have you gone. I miss you. Yearning and burning I reach out only to be pushed away. Always on the outside looking to get in. How did it come to pass? This life?…has turned to mere existence, endless toil for what I do not know. It escapes me. Dream after dream shattered beyond all reckoning and as I collect each piece I am cut on the ragged edges of what my life has become. A shattered mirror.

Piece by jagged piece

I am met with reflections of what was

what is

and what is yet to be

These reflections haunt me, drawing me back and forwards in time afraid to stand still for the quicksand I know is waiting

If I don’t keep moving, I’ll get sucked in, pulling me ever downward in the depths of an empty solipsism that has plagued so many-annihilation of Being

Empty vacant eyes so often stare back at me, various negative impressions bouncing off those walking around oblivious of the space they inhabit, these impressions, feelings ooze from the body emanating without thought or care

Thoughts and feelings leaping from mind to mind
body to body

What is this strangeness, this confusion?
Ah, it is the last shreds of my integrity
my humanity is slowly

stripped…peeled away

too exhausted to fight, too exhausted to care
the only desire left is simply…
rest and the sweet release from
this age of

the world that we are currently encouraging through inaction, the one we will assuredly guarantee with the apathy that is sooooo prevalent in North America which is where the most action is needed is sadly coming to pass. And while the numbers of those of us who know and see the magnitude of what needs to be done continue to grow, the truth of the matter is (as one of my recent posts was named) IT IS NOT ENOUGH!

Hope is exhausting and I would say counterproductive, hope looks like apathy, people think someone else will do it so they don’t have to. Hope isn’t enough, raising consciousness isn’t enough, spreading the word isn’t enough. Stop talking and do!!!

Our beloved earth, our mother who does her best to address our needs. We ungrateful children have pushed her too far and she’s pushing back. We will rue the day we dismissed her so lightly, to think we were sooooo powerful that we could control her, use, and abuse her then discard her like trash. We trash her. I’m glad she’s gonna bite us in the ass. We need to be stopped. And please…do not misunderstand me, I am primarily talking about all those involved in decision making. All the individuals that willfully and intentionally fuck everything bloody for the simple accumulation of money. Everywhere you go there is death and destruction, the more the better…for profit.

We are running out of land, (good land for food purposes) we will run out of water if we allow current practices to continue, food production has already been affected and will only grow out of control as mum steps up, ramps up and shows us who’s really in charge. Every living system is in decline, life spans will shrink, they are already. And even if we do live longer it won’t be in health. We already pay to stay sick. It isn’t profitable to cure people, besides with dwindling resources and they aren’t going to manage them, it will necessitate the reductions of populations.

The future is sickness,
the future is exhaustion,
live to work
work to live
Holidays? Hah!!
You lonely pions
you are undeserving

Don’t you know teachers and nurses get paid too much? Right, but CEO’s don’t they deserve to make kajillions!! We deserve nothing, not water, not food, not housing. Eg. President of SFU makes roughly $500, 000.00 per year, but refuses to pay workers benefits or holiday pay…thats with a fucking union! Yeah, damn those workers they get paid too much already for doing what? (Says administrators, politicians, business leaders)…I smell something funny, is it the biggest mountain of bull ever to have existed…yup, indeedy it is!!!

Get ready for the growth of debtor’s prisons, and the further expansion of the prison system. They already exist, its purely following capitalist logic. Labour is free and with debtors prison’s being privatized it means you run up a bill while your their. So you have to work it off. This is the future of work. Most jobs will have wages like walmart, mcdonalds. They’ll start charging to turn on the taps, and they’ll probably find a way to privatize air or make us all so sick that we all need oxygen tanks due to the air being so choked with pollutants we’ll be allergic. Walking around in something akin to a space suit.

We have already entered this age, temperatures are rising, and our arrogant foolish ways are creating deserts, mudflats, and untold amounts of genocidal suffering and slow long drawn out death.

Thank you Descartes, Aristotle, Hume, Locke, and all the other assholes that are promoted in the west. Talk about a short sighted, myopic, and completely and utterly psychotic worldview that makes all the religious right happy cuz they get their literal interpretation of the coming apocalypse. They can be happy in their self righteousness while they condemn every living thing to death. Few will escape.

This isn’t what I signed on for!

Perpetually flummoxed


Oh, for the love of Water!

The Global Water Wars have begun, that ever precious life’s blood is under threat. Make no mistake, what little we are told about what is occurring in various parts of the world will happen here, it is simply a matter of when. Now more than ever we are seeing a push on all fronts, agribusiness, pharmaceuticals, and the energy sector are grabbing everything…land and all the resources within including dwindling water supplies. Ordinarily, if we had a different worldview in regards to our relation to the earth we wouldn’t have a problem, various cultures around the world understood this relation and worked within the bounds of natural law.

Business as usual does not do this at all. It is not even a consideration. The main objective is to make ever increasing amounts of profit…regardless of the cost. Industry does NOT include the total costs of production, the amount of energy required to get the energy, the cost of all the necessary inputs (water, land, labour, machinery, transport, etc.), and the cost of all the infrastructure necessary for expansion. If it takes 4 barrels of oil to get 1 barrel (tar sands oil) how is that economically feasible? Part of the trouble with all of this is that businesses are able to externalize many of these costs onto us, the consumers. We are never given the whole story, only fragments and pieces of the puzzle and we are left to our own to figure it out and put the puzzle together. I know, I know, your tired, you work hard all day and you just want to relax…well good luck with that!!! All current trends point towards a pretty boring and difficult existence. Hey, I’m tired too. But I want more from life. Let me correct myself, I NEED more than what currently exists. And for this to occur I need help and lots of it. Here in North America, we’re kinda’ slow to see whats going on. Well not all of us, so many are waking from their slumber and stupor, as they are getting rudely awoken. Things can happen pretty fast and change is upon us and it’ll only get faster. The planet is waking up and SHE IS PISSED!!! So am I. And I’m gonna rage right alongside and with her until she sputters her last scream and purges herself of her mistake. Unfortunately, the purge will decimate most of us and other living beings.

Sigh, it is THE Tragedy of Tragedies. I can hardly blame her and am on her side. The current shit show and I will focus on Canada here is really heating up…quite literally!! Having a hard time functioning in this heat, but it sure is good for my fruits and veg growing in my sanctuary, my sacred space. My haven has been violated again and again, to the point where I am unable to enjoy the literal fruits (and veg) of my labours. It’s a costly project at least initially one that I can ill afford and have to do piecemeal, it was supposed to help me in terms of my dwindling health but alas, not even this is allowed me. I’m sick of this shit!!! I’m sick of sheeple who are oblivious to not only their own condition but through extension oblivious to everyone around them and how we all exist in a world full of people. We are always communicating with each other regardless of whether words are spoken or not. We affect each other greatly and cannot exist in isolation. We are NOT separate!!!! I repeat we are not separate.

Water makes up what is it 2/3 of our bodies. We need it to live. LITERALLY. 4 days without water and we are toast. And yes, its in pop and juice too so don’t say you don’t drink water. Now, our government both federal and here in BC are paving the way for industry to completely take over. Often these are foreign companies. Every single plan currently in motion will erode our lives. The plans are to expand our blueberry exports (land and water intensive), to expand our meat exports (mega land and mega water for the cattle, pigs, chickens, and for the food to grow for feed), the expansion of the tar sands and all the natural gas through fracking (the water use is insane for these two). Now if the blueberries are grown organically thats okay, but if chemicals are used then this means that the water from all of these practices is essentially non drinkable and now is waste that has to be stored somehow. It is toxic and dangerous. Everywhere that they have done fracking people are sick. Spontaneous abortions increase, animals die and their are birth defects in the young that survive birth. I won’t get in to all the health stuff.

The end goal is profit. We don’t even factor into their equations, we are irrelevant and so are our needs!!! All that matters is the money. Money and water don’t mix, water trumps money. Now for whatever reason, I have recently ceased to care for the reasons of why or how things occur as the answers do not result in satisfaction, I will not attempt to draw on people’s heart strings, I will appeal to what seems to affect people the most…your pocketbook. Advertisers, businesses, and politicians may denigrate emotions but all the while everything they do is predicated on those same emotions to get you to believe what they say and of course for you to buy!!! This does not seem to be effective in day to day life, that is if you don’t have a position of power or a phD. How utterly ridiculous as I’ve met many ‘experts’ who are rather clueless about most things. Experts in bullshit propaganda more like. Anywho, I will attempt to clarify why the fuck people should care about water!!! Canada does NOT have 1/4 of the worlds water supply. We rank 4th and are tied with the US, China, and someone else that I can’t recall off the top of my head.

Firstly let me elucidate a simple fact. It is a global issue, meaning this is occurring everywhere, workers are under attack, our rights and wages are being eroded. How ironic that the very companies responsible for so much of the joblessness and increasing precarity of what jobs remain, meaning its getting harder and harder to find enough work just to live, are the same dudes that come around acting like the saviour by creating jobs!!! They have created shit!!! What they did do is create desperation and divisiveness. Thats how they get things done. We the people who make them rich have our ability to be self sustaining taken away from us (farmers and such) so that we now have to work for a living…only nowadays working doesn’t necessarily provide us with meeting our needs. So we have to prostitute ourselves for a bit of dosh just so we can purchase what we require to survive. More and more this is not really happening which is why there is so much credit available to almost anyone. ITS A TRAP!!!!!!! Now I’m from Kitimat, recently home to L&G. Since then air quality has gone to shit. Many more proposals are in the works. HOw many people from Kitimat actually got jobs??? What kind of jobs??? Did you know the companies actually boast about creating jobs for women…yeah, they’re boasting about women cooking and cleaning, and of course stripping and prostitution. Yup, business is good for women!! Yikes, and we call this progress…really? These jobs are temporary, you got duped folks. You’re gonna’ get robbed blind. It’s a classic set up. Create desperation through low employment levels, attack and dismantle unions and labour laws so that wages can be kept as low as possible, then when you make the proposal for your industry, people who are desperate for work (and understandably so!!!!), will say, YES PLEASE COME TO OUR TOWN!!! But the initial benefits quickly dry up and the effects are ten fold.

So you were promised employment, but how many of you are skilled labourers of the type required by mining, gas and oil industries? Hmmm, betting not as many as you would hope. Women will get hired as servants and sexual objects that is the nature of industry work camps as is high amounts of substance use. Most of the work will be brought in from outside. In other words, most jobs will be outsourced. And low and behold, the surrounding community/town starts to feel the effects. Housing costs increase, food prices go up, gas, electricity, everything goes up. So how’s your pocket doing about now???? Is this still working for you? Accidents are prone to happen, but even if things were perfect in terms of standards (like companies ever do the ‘right’ thing, instead of cutting corners-to cut costs) the water will get fucked up. It’ll be poisoned and so will the air and the soil. When production slows in @ 5 yrs and it is no longer even remotely economical(not that it was to begin with) the out of towner workers will leave and you’ll be left footing the bill. Remember I mentioned the externalization of costs, yeah!! You’ll probably be expected to now pay for water, either through the purchase of bottled water or privatization of municipal water supplies. Paying to turn on the tap, to shower. Property will be worthless. And often people are expected to move and relocate. That is pretty much the standard fare for how these operations run. Don’t believe me, look at what happened in Detroit with their water.

This is an absolute cluster fuck waiting to happen!!! Companies get tonnes of free money we actually have corporate welfare/socialism for people running the companies and their friends in government while the rest of us have to muddle through with capitalism. What do you really think is going to happen with companies and foreign companies at that, have access to all our resources???? Honestly think they’ll let you have any when they’ve poisoned what little remains? If we actually managed water maybe we wouldn’t have a problem, but we don’t. North America is the biggest waster of water on the planet. And don’t even talk about de-salinization…fuck that noise!

I hope to hell I’ve managed to piss some people off, but please, direct your anger at the right target cuz it sure as heck isn’t me that’s responsible for this mess. I’m doing my part…why aren’t you?

(For all those who are working and fighting, keep it up wherever you are and I will too!! LOVE PEACE xoxox)

It’s Not Enough

It’s not enough to be born into a world not of my making, that by a sheer accident of birth, I was born in a place hidden from much of the world. These places are many. It’s not enough to be born in the body of a female, a small wee lass that was prone to dream…dream of a world that may never be, a world she wants, NEEDS, so desperately. It’s not enough to exist in a world that values so little, and in so doing this world, our world shrinks with every passing day when it we could make it expand. What have our lives become apart from endless toil that with each passing year meets less and less of our physical and psychical needs. Its not enough for me to yearn for connection with others and be reduced to gaining any sense of comfort primarily through voices on television, words in books, or through computer screens, and mobile phones…and yet somehow unable to build meaningful, lasting, relations with real human beings who I can see, smell, and touch. It’s not enough to know I’m not alone in my pain and isolation because out there somewhere others hurt too. I bloody well know that!!!! That is what I cannot escape…my earliest of memories are those of feeling others pain and wanting to identify and understand why we all suffer so much. Its not enough to be a part of the species and yet feel always apart!

I am finding it more and more difficult to contain myself. What remains of my lifespan I cannot say for sure, but I know it will not be that long. I feel it in my bones, my muscles, tissues…down to each and every cell. My body has borne too much. My BEING in all its entirety has been pushed beyond its ability to cope, again, and again. And still the hidden expectations of others is that I must endure, continue, expend more energy when already operating from a deficit.  When will it end? How much more do I have to endure simply to satisfy others. I have been accused of being a rebel, anti this that and the other. What does it matter the name others give to MY experience. It is mine and only I can say what it is that I feel and know. It is my truth and yet, I have had to struggle all my years for this simple fact to be heard. Well now I’m saying it. Often I feel like screaming, screaming at the indifference, the barrage of cold that emanates from so many. But how do you scream at a feeling, a sensation? I can not blame individuals as they were trained to behave thus. The environment we live in (culture, institutions, media) shapes us, for changes in the behaviour of people to change, the environment must change. But then, how did I become? I have been repeatedly called an anomaly, really? In a sea of individuals how is it that I, me, She am an anomaly? Too many contradictions not enough reality, that is my everyday. People often parrot what is said in mainstream media, hear it all the time. What I hear is a total lack of understanding of how things are, the causes of all our ills, and whats to be done of them. Or in regards to the latter, the impossibility of change. What is truly impossible is the idea of NOT changing. Like it isn’t already happening all around us already. total mass delusion. And again, I have recently been told that I would most likely be happier in a different country. I can believe that!!!!

I cannot help to be a rebel if that is indeed the right word, I believe it to be inaccurate, it is simply a response of my Being in this world I don’t want to be in.  Not as it stands anyway. I don’t have a choice in this, my body, my intellect demand it…my heart demands it. My body is breaking down and while it seems I have been given a temporary reprieve, I do not believe this will last. I have tried to meet with all of lifes challenges head on. Alas, to no avail, nothing sticks or lasts. All progress is then met with more setbacks so that I am always further behind than ever getting ahead. Each attempt at making all the necessary changes and well, apart from two therapists that have arrived on the scene within the last year…gains are small and more on an interpersonal level than anything.  What I have come to understand is that my survival, my very existence (let alone whether I am given the opportunity to live and thrive) is tied to all of you. This is not something that is particular to only me, this is the fundamental truth of being. In fact there is and never was an ‘I’, the fact that it exists now as a concept and belief is through interaction. The ‘I’ that exists in us could never come to be without each other. So at the core of every person this need of others is forever present, for without it we would cease to be. I’ve been thinking about this a great deal in the last year. I know on a profound level that my future depends on us all and again, not alone. I was born with an extremely sensitive nervous system and am incredibly affected by environment. I can do all the self-improvement I want and thats exactly what I’m doing, but at some point this too becomes self-defeating as I appear to move further and further away from people. I grow as much as I can without a lot of interaction, but if I don’t meet other people and form real bonds…well, I may be an introvert but I’m not a bloody hermit. Although it feels like I’m becoming one at times. I have less and less in common with people as I grow and this is what gets soooooo frustrating. Life has become dangerously idiotic, redundant, and plain stupid. Everything is ass backwards. It’s really bordering on the ridiculous. It’s a good thing that I have a warped sense of humour or else I would prolly be in jail if didn’t:D


FUCK!!    SHIT!!     FUCKSHIT I want to scream, shout, kick, punch, lash, slash, rage until I infect everyone with this need, deep need for change. It aches, it hurts, it pulls, and tears. How to reach people, teach people, engage and share, love and laugh, and CREATE? Sing, dance, play, fuck, make music, glorious music, and dance, and dance, and never stop.

Push, pull, push, pull…c’mere go away, c’mere go away, gimme gimme gimme, gimme some more but never ever expect the same in return none for you girl, none for you! be grateful, think positive, if things haven’t worked you must be doing something wrong or there’s something wrong with you.

Perhaps I should dedicate a blog to all the stupid shit people say and it all amounts to the same thing-SHUT UP! I don’t want to listen, I don’t want to take responsibility, I’m busy, my pains bigger than your pain. I’m more deserving than you.

Frankly speaking what I’m getting at is that we are not all human beings but rather mere shadows of what we could be. I will never be able to reconcile this sensation of knowing what is so easy and obvious and yet, so few are aware and capable of communicating with me it becomes a constant mindfuck. I wish I could record the things people say and play it back for them.


fuckit, I’m spent. I guess I’ll be back another day but frankly the notion that somehow the writings of these blogs will help me somewhat is again something that can only be determined if people start engaging. If I am simply writing for the sake of writing then this format is not to my liking as it has a tendency to grow the sensation of being more disconnected than ever before.









Part 4-Addendum

I had backed off from including personal experiences in the blog due to a technical mishap, however after a recent discussion with a friend as well as having read some material said friend leant to me, I find myself back here wanting to share. I have been undergoing a rather intense period of self-reflection and how that ties in with the bigger picture…how do I continue to move forward in this society given its severe limitations and the ways in which it alters how we act and treat one another? I have very few people in my life and have been attempting to connect with others in meaningful ways but as I have changed and grown somewhat, the meanings of what true friendship or sexual relationships are have changed also. It is far more difficult to cultivate relations with others these days than it used to be. Nowhere is this more apparent than in my relations with men after becoming single approximately 5 yrs ago. This also coincided with the end of my education. I spent 6 yrs at a private institution, then went to college and university. I was unable to get further than my bachelor’s degree for financial reasons. In some ways I was not part of larger society as I only interacted with others in class. Not being a partier meant that I didn’t do a lot of socializing outside of class. So with the end of school and the end of my relationship, I had to start over from scratch, putting myself ‘out there’ again and again.

I have been on quite a lot of dates but I find elements of dating to be quite nauseating. The ‘scripts’ that we have created for men and women are distasteful and the pool from which I want to fish seems to shrink all the time. The most basic explanation is that often we are simply on different pages. His script is not my script. What I try to take away from my experiences in the dating realm is that I am gaining valuable information. What I will or will not accept in terms of expectations, values, desires, and needs. I am learning what my boundaries are, am still learning. I am learning to care for myself, respect myself, to not let anyone tell me who or what I am when they’ve only met me for 5 minutes. I know now my intuition is my most valuable asset and to not let others attempt to dissuade me from trusting it. You may be surprised at how often this can occur. There is this brilliant little zine called Derailing for Dummies that illustrates all the various tactics that people often used to shut each other down in order to dominate or change the subject. And to illustrate what I mean further I shall use an example from an experience. I met someone online, we chatted, decided to meet, had dinner, and then he wanted to go to his place, I said I wasn’t comfortable, he said he wouldn’t do anything we could just chat. I gave in though I didn’t want to, I wanted to go home. So against my better judgement I did, I put his desires and needs above mine. He bought alcohol, I said I didn’t want it, ‘oh, c’mon, just have one.’ ‘Fine, just one.’ He started talking about sex and proceeded to place a blind fold on me and tried moving the strap of my top down. I pulled it up, removed the blindfold and said I had only agreed to come and talk that I didn’t want to do anything of a sexual nature as we had just met. He then tried talking me into having a massage…do you get the picture. I said I wanted to go home he finally agreed but he made sure to let me know how ridiculous I was being. He kept saying things like, ‘you know, I’m a father, it’s not like I’m going to hang you upside down by the ankle’s and…! He went on, and on, and on. I said that being a woman means that I have to take my personal safety seriously, he won’t do it, so I have to. Well, apparently, according to him, my wanting to be safe was ludicrous, my need for trust was irrelevant because as he stated a number of times, I could trust him. I was simply overreacting and am just crazy.

The scenarios change, as does the degree and intensity but not the messages. I stand up for myself, and if it doesn’t fit what the man wants then I’m crazy. All I can say to that is WOW!! Being single ain’t all bad, at least I can meet my own needs. I know there are amazing men out there, and within the last year I have met 4 and they are truly wonderful. It is very difficult to meet men such as these where we consider ourselves equal and treat each other with regard and respect. They are platonic, therein lies the problem. Reciprocity, mutual regard and respect, trust, and acceptance plus chemistry. So this of course is what I need to be present in any sort of sexual interaction, without it, I frankly don’t see the point. I will accept no substitute. I will not be some inferior version of myself for someone else’s benefit and which in turn hurts me. I have done previously, well…no longer.

Now that is a simple example and perhaps to some it would appear that I am sensitive (whatever the fuck that means-I doubt that my responses are that different from anyone else when put into the same situation, it’s always different when its you huh!). So perhaps it is worth delving a bit into the past to put things in context. This certainly doesn’t cover most of it but there are two or three particular experiences that impacted me greatly that are particular to the issue of laws concerning gender and reproductive rights. These are experiences I’ve decided that I’m willing to share in order to help elucidate and humanize the effects of policies developed by men for women. I would like to also point out that my experiences are shared throughout the world by millions of women as many experiences have been so normalized and so common. How many rape scenes have you seen in tv or film with men where it is actually shown as opposed to suggested and then leaving the rest to your imagination? And how many rape scenes of women are shown…and quite graphically!! It has become quite common in recent years…far too common. In fact violence against women on tv has increased and is also in video games. I haven’t even touched on porn!!

So to put things in context and perspective let us begin…

As a child I witnessed the abuse of my mother. I heard and saw a great deal, this lead me to fear my father, especially after seeing him naked on one particular occassion-I had eaten too many strawberries and had woke up in the middle of the night sick and vomiting-I was crying and he came out nude, I went passed him and into the bedroom to her side. I could not wake up my to wake up my mum, she was completely unresponsive. Now my bedroom was beside theirs so its not like I couldn’t hear anything and after that night I started snooping in drawers trying to find evidence of some kind that would tell me how he was hurting her. What my father did to my mother radically affected the way she interacted with me. Children need consistency or they don’t develop healthy attachments with others and often have difficulty with how they conceive of themselves. I do not say these things to hurt my mum, I love her, but I have had to work through many things that are a direct result of that relationship. I’m just glad she was able to escape!! I still remember that night, hiding in the stairwell with a bean bag baby in an orange sleeper. It was particularly bad that night, my mum fled and I was afraid, not knowing what would happen to me but she came back for me and we left in a police car. We stayed for awhile at my grandparents, can’t remember for how long, I have huge holes where memories should be but aren’t. The memories I do have, well, I don’t necessarily want those either! But we do need them in order to make sense of things. So, I think I was 7 when we were finally able to leave, but in those 7 yrs, what I ended up learning or my interpretation of events led me to formulate a very specific view of myself. That I was not loveable, I was in fact a mistake and should not have come into being, and am not entirely sure if my conception arose out of consensual relations. Again, this is not meant to punish my mum or to make any mother who happens to read this feel guilty, I am simply using myself as an example, to show just a fraction of the kinds of pain that both mother and child experience when CHOICE is taken away from her and she is disempowered by others. Also, I have spent a lot of time learning to understand what my mum must have gone through, I can only imagine what would run through her mind and the inner conflict she must have experienced every time she looked upon my face. No woman should have to go through what my mother and so many others have gone through. It deeply changes the kind of relationship she is capable of having with her child.

Anywho, my mum met someone and I remember meeting him and then shortly after we moved into an apartment. This new man in time became my step-dad and I loved him. He became my real dad and I discarded the other in my mind and heart. It wasn’t long before things kinda got weird and I don’t want to go into detail and even if I wanted to, well…from the age of 9 or 10 until I was 18, my life, or should I say my mind fragmented, blew into pieces. My body however remembers every. damn. thing.  Memories come unbidden often at the most inopportune time. Have I mentioned that my dad was aboriginal? Yup, just in a previous section of this conversation. Where I am from, the aboriginal population was one of ‘those’ yes, I mean the people were displaced, relocated, and the children sent to residential school. Those schools may not be in operation, but their legacy continues…and I am part of that legacy. The suffering that continues to occur throughout the world to aboriginal populations is nothing short of genocide. It would appear to me that church and state are directly responsible for its original implementation and its continuance. So I have forgiven my dad as I don’t believe he was aware of what he was doing, and I mean that as fucked up as it may sound, it came from a place of love rather than control or power. In many ways, he was still a child wanting love and acceptance and his relations with his own children were strained, so when he met me and I accepted and loved him completely, it confused him. I believe that in his mind he thought he was loving me but because his own development was shut down he couldn’t see the power differential. I understand on some level how this occurs. If someone has had their boundaries violated it is often the case that people are not aware what constitutes as a boundary. So, I experienced sexual trauma, actually I’ll use the real word. I was raped…repeatedly until I left home at the age of 18.

I moved to Vancouver in 89 and moved in with my boyfriend. I had a job at a sandwich place that was in a medical building. Within a few months I ended up going to the doctor in the building and had a physical. I was sent for bloodwork and when I got home that friday I found a message on the machine saying I had tested positive. I was pregnant. My greatest fear (and I think it was a fear for my  mum as well, she put me on the pill quite young as she didn’t trust men and wanted to protect me from the unthinkable). I didn’t tell my mum, I thought I knew already how she would respond so I didn’t dare, my boyfriend said he’d leave. I would be alone with this. I was working 6 days a week 16 hrs a day, often without a lunch break. So I went into the doctors office on the monday and had to walk through prolife pickets as there was a doctor in the building who performed them. I was informed that I was already 3 months along, he could tell by the examination and asked why I hadn’t come sooner. I said the pill had never made me regular, this sort of thing had happened before (skipping 3 months and then being sick for a prolonged period of time). I told him I had already made my decision and that I needed to have an operation. I was sent down the street to this doctor (I didn’t know about the one in the work building at the time). There were all kinds of suspicious leaflets in the waiting room. I was given an ultrasound told I was with twins, got a massive lecture, and was physically examined again…roughly enough to make me bleed for a few days. I was told just how rotten I was and that he wouldn’t do it. I ran into the stairwell where I collapsed into fetal position and wept. I didn’t understand why I had to go through all of that to be told no. He didn’t listen to a thing I said. It wasn’t just financial reasons although I could never live with myself if I couldn’t provide my child with all the opportunities they would so rightly deserve. I didn’t and don’t believe that simply because I was born a women that I have more rights than an innocent child who would be completely dependent on me for EVERYTHING! Sorry, not me. It goes against everything I believe in as does adoption. To go through the entire experience to then give my child/ren away????? Are people insane…don’t answer that, I already know. I know the damage thats done to mothers and children alike it is a void that no one can fill. I saw them come in and out of the recovery houses for 2 1/2 years. Women who were forced to give up their child or had them taken away, and I saw the children who regardless of whether they had loving adopted families, still couldn’t confront and resolve the pain of their unwantedness.  I would’ve been another welfare mum and welfare is not kind to single mothers. On top of that I was terrified of the effects I would have on my children stemming from my own unresolved conflict and pain. I didn’t want to hurt or damage my children, I wouldn’t have been able to take care of them even if I had been stronger at the time, and I would never be able to live with myself by discarding them or giving up my responsibility. I was denied this choice and it impacted me severely. The things this medical professional(?) said were unbelievable. After a few months a friend told me about a free women’s clinic and said she would accompany me as she could tell I had been traumatized and was now in denial (I hadn’t seen any other doctor after this incident). We went and the nurses their were horrified by my story, they were trying to encourage me to press charges as it was illegal but I had blocked out all the relevant information. From this point everything happened rapidly, the doctor was a gem of a man, kind and gentle and apologetic. By this time I was 7 months along but not developing. My stomach was not expanding although my breasts were, it was found that the babies were in fact dead. Stress, long work hours, lack of sleep, and not enough food was insufficient for life. I had to undergo 24 hours of contractions before surgery but everything went smoothly from there on.

A few years later I got into drugs and ended up pregnant again, except this time I knew where to go and everything was fine. No trouble, no pain, no trauma. Apart from my father calling at an ungodly hour to ream me out about ‘his’ loss and what I was doing to him. This when I specifically told my step mother not to say anything. I knew how he would react. Why did I tell her??? Well, I was high! And sometimes when you don’t have a lot of people around shit comes out when you don’t want it to just cuz it needs comin out!!!!!!  Does this help demonstrate the damage that is done in the name of belief and more specifically with the belief’s of the religious right-ie. Stephen Harper. I believe it does.

I could add that last experience but it would lengthen this even more and frankly its so heavy and harsh I think I had better leave it but it has similar elements. It was a relationship with a man who was ill but I didn’t know it initially. He suffers from schizophrenia and by that I mean the religious version. I have only started to heal from this in the past year the damage that occured was nothing short of annihilation, I almost didn’t make it out. It is this repeated imposition of beliefs that is the problem and this is not often talked about. In fact I haven’t really heard much in the way of what the effects of this are and I am a prolific reader. I hope my experiences add an element to my arguments to put them in frame, or context. Too often information is given completely devoid of context and oddly enough this changes everything. When subjects/events/people are put in context you can see how misunderstood things really are!!!!!